Goldin Auctions Review: The Auction Action Series

Auction houses continue to be popular venues for selling sports cards, especially those with a high value.  At CardLines, we continue in a series called Auction Action, which looks at different auction houses and offers an in-depth review of their operations, offerings, and much more. This week we give you our Goldin Auctions review.

Make sure to check out our previous reviews of REA and Heritage Auctions.

Introduction To The Goldin Auctions Review

While eBay remains a popular venue to buy and sell cards, auction houses can sometimes offer a good alternative.  Goldin Auctions has been for several years and has gotten recent publicity for providing some of the highest-end items that can be found, especially newer, super high-grade material.

The executive chairman and founder of Goldin Auctions, Ken Goldin, has a long history in card circles.  Goldin Auctions was recently acquired by Collector Holdings, the parent company of well-known sportscards grading firm PSA.  Additionally, Goldin Auctions has continued to evolve in the marketplace. For example, it now offers a vault where cards can be securely stored and digitally viewed by owners.

According to their website, Goldin Auctions “routinely sets records for the most expensive trading cards and memorabilia ever sold.” Adding to their brand, they collaborate with athletes and agents to get many unique pieces.

Goldin Auctions specializes in getting high bids for high-ticket items.

Based out of New Jersey, Goldin is a fixture on the auction circuit and regularly receives national press for auction offerings that comprise very high-end contemporary cards and memorabilia.  Lately, the sports card and memorabilia market has seen a significant uptick in the value of such items, and Goldin and been one of the leaders in handling these transactions.

Goldin Auctions Review: Specialties

The company has auctioned off many of the highest-end contemporary cards and pieces of memorabilia.  These include:

  • The most valuable Mike Trout rookie card ever sold ($3,840,000)
  • The highest price for a Kobe Bryant Jersey ever  ($3,6900,000)
  • The costliest Michael Jordan item ever sold ($2,700,000)
  • The highest price for a player contract – Babe Ruth ($1,007,250)
  • 1980-81 Larry Bird/Magic Johnson PSA 10 ($840,000)
  • The highest price for a Heisman Trophy – Tim Brown ($426,000)

Goldin Auctions Review: Catalogs

Goldin Auctions offers both a printed catalog and a digital catalog via their website for all their auctions.  Their auctions run approximately monthly.  Anyone who has previously bid on a lot in a Goldin Auction will receive a free catalog in the mail. Bidders receive complimentary copies for all future auctions as well.

Many collectors prefer viewing the auction wares in a digital format. Therefore, Goldin offers a top-notch website with informative descriptions and high-resolution scans. In addition, every current auction can easily be found on their easy-to-navigate website.

What Is The Goldin Vault?

Goldin Auctions offers a novel service called “the vault.”  Secure storage for sports cards and memorabilia valued at $1,000 or more is provided through this service.  Owners (including winners of just completed Goldin Auctions) can have their sports collectibles stored safely there.

Goldin creates a digital portfolio for all its vault members as well. It allows the owner to view their possessions at any time.

The Goldin Vault provides your items with maximum security.

Goldin can mail items to the owner at any time (after a 1% removal fee). You can also put them for sale in a Goldin auction (with no removal fee). In addition, there is an insurance policy that comes with a vault subscription. You can store items in the vault indefinitely.

Although the vault concept is probably not for everyone (especially if you want to hold your collectible with your own hands, in person), it does offer benefits. For example, often storage for extensive collections can be an issue, but not here. Also, worrying about the safety of your collections is a concern for many collectors. However, the vault system solves many of those problems.

Also, the Goldin Auction website states there is no sales tax for items won in their auctions, as long as you place the items directly in the vault. The vault is located in Delaware for that reason.  We encourage you to read more details about the vault here.

The Goldin Auctions Review Of Buyer And Seller Fees

Let’s look at the fees associated with Goldin Auctions.  The Buyer’s fee is a standard 20% if you pay by cashier’s check, money order, wire transfer, cryptocurrency, or check within 10 days of the invoice date.

Therefore, a lot won with a $100 bid will cost the bidder $120 in actual cost.  The Buyer’s fee for the Auction is 23% if payment is made using a credit card and/or is not paid within 10 days of the invoice date. \

Goldin holds orders paid by personal checks for five (5) business days. The company does not accept PayPal.  Payments made via Crypto Currency will be subject to an additional 0.5% fee.  Finally, winning bidders will be charged tax (if applicable) and postage and insurance.

The Buyer’s premium is often negotiated with the auction house based on the value of the offered item.  The more expensive the item, the lower the Buyer’s premium. Goldin Auctions has an easy-to-use ‘consign’ tab and another tab called ‘contact us’ where interested parties can contact the auction house and discuss details of their potential offerings.

How Do You Place A Bid With Goldin Auctions?

A prospective bidder must register for a Goldin auction.  The registration process is short and easy to follow.  Once you complete the registration, you will have a bidder ID you can use in all subsequent Goldin auctions. In addition, the bidder will set up a confidential password that will also work in all Goldin auctions.  Once the account is set up, the process is relatively simple:

  1. Go to goldinauctions.com.
  2. Find the ‘Sign In’ tab in the upper right-hand corner
  3. For previous bidders, you will be asked to sign in with your email address.  This step generates a verification code for Goldin Auctions’ new auction format.
  4. Once the verification code is confirmed, the Goldin Auction homepage will automatically come up.
  5. Click on the ‘Buy tab in the upper right-hand corner.  This step will take you directly to the latest Auction.
  6. The Auction will pop up, which can be searched numerically, by keyword(s), or by broad category (like sports cards or autographs), and then by more refined classification (like baseball).
  7. Each lot can be highlighted with a simple click.
  8. Once the lot is highlighted, pictures of the item(s) will appear and allow you to zoom in for closer scrutiny.
  9. The lot will state the current high bid, the time left in the Auction, and the option to bid on the lot or add it to a bidder’s ‘watch list.’
  10. A bidding box will also appear where the bidder is informed of the current bid and the successive three bids.  The bidder can choose to bid on any of these three or bid a specific preferred amount.
  11. Then, click the “Place Bid” button and confirm.

How Do Lots Close?

The company allows online bidding around the clock, up to the final day of the Auction.  You must make initial bids for lots by 10:00 PM EST.  Goldin Auctions will continue to accept offers on lots after 10:00 but only from bidders who have placed a bid on that lot.  If you have not bid on an item before 10:00 PM, you cannot bid on the item after 10:00 PM.

After 10:00 PM EST, Goldin Auctions institutes the’ 30-minute rule’.  If you are the only bidder on a given lot at 10:00 PM, Goldin automatically closes it out and declares you the winner. For the rest of the lots, the ’30 Minute Rule’ starts, and EACH lot will close individually after that lot goes 30 minutes with no new bids.

Whenever you place a new bid, the 30-minute timer resets, and they restart the countdown. The thinking of this format is that the 30-minute rule provides all bidders with the opportunity to bid on the lots they are eligible to bid on. Meanwhile, no one can “snipe” due to time constraints.  A word of caution, though, watch your MyAccount page and login first to see the status of lots during extended bidding.

Goldin design their auctions to receive high bids for items

Shipping Details

Goldin adds the costs of packaging, shipping, and insurance to every winning invoice customers do not send to the vault. However, you can pick up your winnings at their physical address (as long as you call ahead), in which case Goldin drops the fees. However, you will still pay the sales tax.

Goldin sends most winnings via FedEx with tracking, insurance, and required signature confirmation. The company calculates insurance at a rate of $0.09 per $100 of the realized auction price.

The Bottom Line Of The Goldin Auctions Review

Goldin Auctions is an essential auction house to browse when looking for current sports cards and memorabilia, especially in high grades.  Goldin has helped set the trend of uber high-grade cards from a recent issue and one-of-a-kind collectible items that have often realized very high auction prices.

In addition, Goldin’s vault offers a service most auction houses do not possess.  It will be interesting to see whether or not this service generates a popular following.  Goldin continues to be innovative and, with the backing of Collector Holdings, looks to continue to be a significant player in the auction circuit for the foreseeable future.

CardLines